A Brief Introduction About the Nanny Contract
A nanny contract is an agreement which the parents of the child and the caregiver enter. These contracts are not very complicated but are essential to ensure that the relationship with the nanny remains amicable. There are different types of nanny contracts, depending on the time nanny is required to devote to your child. If you want the nanny to live in your house and be available for your child 24×7, then you would need to draft alive-in nanny contract.
On the other hand, if you require a nanny for certain specified hours in a day, then part-time nanny contract would be advisable. You would need to identify your needs concerning your child to decide what type of nanny contract would be suitable. These agreements help to define the expectations of both parties and help avoid disputes in the long run.
Who Takes the Nanny Contract – People Involved
A nanny contract is entered into by the parents of the child and a nanny or caregiver. A nanny is trained in all aspects of caring for a child, and for this, they charge a salary. Just like any other contract, there are certain deliverables on the part of the nanny which need to be executed as mentioned in the contract.
Purpose of the Nanny Contract – Why do you Need it
A nanny contract is required when you are hiring a nanny for your child as it helps to understand and define the mutual expectations of both parties.
When there is a contract, then it becomes an official document, and both parties will try and fulfill their respective obligations.
There are a lot of undesirable situations like health emergencies which need to be factored into the agreement and the rules to be followed in such cases. Before hiring a nanny, you will need to spell out the responsibilities and the remuneration you are willing to pay. The nanny may or may not agree to all the terms and conditions you put forth. A discussion will be required to come to an amicable solution. Once all the clauses have been discussed, then the agreement should be drafted.
The agreement is essential as it protects the rights of both the employer and the nanny. If the employer finds that service is deficient on the part of the nanny, then the services of the nanny can be terminated. If the employer defaults in the payment of the remuneration or does not grant the benefits mentioned in the contract, the nanny can take legal action against the employer.
Contents of the Nanny Contract – Inclusions
A nanny contract must contain the names of the parties to the agreement, the employer, and the nanny. You can draft a contract by referring to a sample nanny contract.
A nanny contract must include:
- The effective date of the agreement
- Employer information: The agreement should consist of the address and the contact information of the employer.
- Wages: The wages and the number of hours they relate to, the amount and rate at which overtime will be paid along with paid holidays if any. Benefits being offered to the nanny must be stated.
- Job responsibilities: The work schedule, including the details of childcare relating to discipline, time spent on breaks for watching television, dietary guidelines, cleanliness, and hygiene. If there are any duties concerning homework or extracurricular activities, this should be included
- Taxes: Payment of taxes is the responsibility of the employer
- Transportation: The nanny needs to have her driving credentials updated. The vehicle to be used by them needs to be specified. Information relating to car seat specifications should be addressed and whether they will be using their car or not.
- Communication: The agreement must include the methods by which you will communicate with the nanny. This will depend on the frequency of communication. The choice of phone, video chat or childcare apps will then be decided
- Confidentiality: There should be strict instructions on confidentiality, that photos of the child should not be uploaded on social media under any circumstances
- House related rules: This clause should define who will be allowed into the employer’s residence, setting off the alarm, parking, and pets
- Restrictions: The nanny cannot smoke or drink while on duty. There will be restrictions relating to phone or internet access.
How to Draft the Nanny Contract
Points to Consider While Preparing the Agreement
A nanny contract example can help you draft a suitable agreement.
While drafting this contract, these are the following points to be kept in mind:
- Parties to the agreement: The includes, names of the parties and the relationship between them.
- The date from which the agreement becomes effective
- Salary and benefits: This should include the probationary period salary and the salary on the confirmation. Other benefits being provided to her like overtime and paid leave should be documented as well. You also need to mention her privileges such as usage of the phone and sick leave. As far as family vacations are concerned, it would help if you decided whether she will accompany you or not. Will you pay for her lodging, toiletries and so on?
- Taxes: Provisions for payment of taxes for your nanny need to made and included here
- Insurance: You need to add the kind of coverage that you will be providing her, such as health, worker’s compensation, automobile, or liability. How much insurance will you be providing her?
- Review: You need to make provisions for an annual review to assess her performance and inform her of any improvements required if any
- Termination of contract: It would be advisable to have an at-will provision, where both parties can end the contract without assigning any reason.
In a nanny contract, both the employer and the nanny need to discuss every clause of the contract before signing the official agreement. Areas of negotiation include the salary and other benefits due to the nanny, the working hours, including overtime, the restrictions that apply to the nanny while she is at work and duties concerning the child.
Benefits & Drawbacks of the Nanny Contract
- Protection of interest: The interest of both parties is protected. The employer is assured of a certain minimum standard of service from the nanny as well as the safety of the child. The nanny is guaranteed the pay mentioned in the agreement, including the benefits as well as any other privileges. She has to abide by the rules laid down by her employer to ensure that she gets the remuneration promised
- Termination of contract: Such contracts include an at-will clause whereby the nanny or the employer may terminate the contract without mentioning any reason
- Flexibility: You have the freedom to pursue your professional work without having to worry about the wellbeing of your child. This is true, especially in cases where you need to travel frequently.
- Restrictions: The nanny has to follow the rules laid down by the employer strictly. As she is the caregiver of a child, the risks are high, and any minor deviation by her could result in the termination of her employment
- Overtime: In some cases, a live-in nanny would have to be paid overtime over and above what you pay for room and board.
What Happens in Case of Violation
In case of a nanny contract, both the employer and the nanny have to be extra cautious since the service involves taking care of a child. There are high risks involved as the child is highly vulnerable to illnesses and injury. For this reason, a background check must be carried out in case of the nurse.
The nanny should be a trained professional, and her experience should be verified before employing her. Errors can happen even with the best of professionals when it comes to a child, so the rules of the agreement must spell out the responsibility of the nanny who should follow it diligently. If the nurse violates any clause in the contract concerning any of the privileges granted to her like watching television or making phone calls, the agreement is terminated immediately due to the at-will provision.
[ Also Read: Babysitting Contract ]
For more severe cases of violation where the life of the child has been threatened due to her negligence, the consequences could be either a penalty or imprisonment or both. Where the employer has not paid the nanny her dues even though she has carried out her duties according to the contract, the nanny can take her employer to court. Where both parties have violated the agreement, as per the laws of the state, the contract will be declared null and void(1).
Both you and the nanny must exercise caution while filling up the nanny contract form.
A nanny contract is an agreement which is mandatory if you are planning to hire a nanny or if you are applying for the position of a nanny. Taking care of a child is a fundamental responsibility as the slightest error could endanger the life of the child.
Therefore, both the parents of the child as well as the nanny have to discuss the details of all the responsibilities involved. It would help if you were prepared to pay the right remuneration for a nanny who has the required experience and cannot compromise on quality care for your child.
A nanny contract will ensure that the rights of both the employer and the nanny are protected.
The nanny will have to strictly follow the rules laid down by the employer or parent of the child. The parent of the child needs to make regular payments to the nanny for services rendered by her, including all the benefits mentioned in the agreement.
[Also Read: Daycare Contract]